Remembering Stonewall in western Iowa

C.J. Petersen: There’s a stereotype out there that western Iowans are intolerant, bigoted, or just plain dumb. That couldn’t be further from the truth. -promoted by Laura Belin

My name is C.J. Petersen. I work in sales, I’m a health care and substance abuse treatment advocate—and I’m an alcoholic. I’m also the only openly-LGBTQ Democratic nominee for the Iowa Senate this year, running in District 6 (Audubon, Buena Vista, Carroll, eastern Crawford, and Sac counties).

While I don’t drink anymore, and have been blessed by God with nearly three years of continuous sobriety, I am mindful of queer bars’ role in the history of my community’s struggle for full equality. It wasn’t all that long ago that it was illegal to be openly-LGBTQ in most parts of our country.

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A queer perspective on Iowa's U.S. Senate primary

Bleeding Heartland user fake_adam is a non binary teen from Sioux City. -promoted by Laura Belin

Growing up as a queer youth in America is terrifying.

You constantly face the fear of being ostracized by your family, friends, and community just for being who you are. Worse than that is the constant threat of bigotry, murder, and the stripping away of rights because someone who’s never met you thinks that you are unnatural and wrong.

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Exclusive: Iowa governor denied 35 AG requests to join national cases

Governor Kim Reynolds denied 35 requests to sign Iowa on to multi-state legal actions during the first year of an unusual arrangement in which Attorney General Tom Miller ceded some of his authority.

Reynolds refused to allow the state to weigh in on lawsuits related to federal or state policies on immigration, reproductive rights, environmental regulation, consumer protection, gun safety, LGBTQ rights, and access to President Donald Trump’s personal records.

During the same time frame, the governor approved eighteen requests from Miller to join cases involving a wide range of legal matters.

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State Patrol must respect civil rights at Iowa Capitol

Iowa lawmakers have never enacted a “bathroom ban” targeting transgender people, but some State Patrol officers took it upon themselves to enforce that non-existent policy at the Capitol on March 12.

Security guards forced a large group of students to leave the building because some of the teens had used restrooms conforming to their gender identity.

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Iowa House unanimously votes to outlaw "gay/trans panic" defense

Iowa House members voted 95 to 0 on March 5 to prohibit criminal defendants from claiming any violent crime was justified because of emotions related to discovering the victim’s “sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity.”

House Judiciary Committee chair Steven Holt introduced the bill later renamed House File 2503. The initial draft applied to those charged with causing the death of another person. An amendment drafted by Republican State Representative Bobby Kaufmann and Democratic State Representative Liz Bennett broadened the scope to cover anyone accused of a violent crime.

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Pete's "gay problem" that isn't

Ira Lacher: Demonizing Pete Buttigieg for his sexual orientation might be the worst political blunder the Trumpanistas could make. -promoted by Laura Belin

Been Skyping for years with a longtime friend from my Bronx growing-up days, and when he’s fed up with venting about the ineptitude of the New York Mets, our discussions turn to politics.

He’s still undecided, and has a long time before he votes in the New York primary in late April, but he’s willing to support anyone who’s not a self-described socialist, a gaffe-prone warhorse, a Hillary clone, a billionaire, or a quixotic Hawaiian. So his choice is between Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar, about whom he doesn’t know enough, and former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, about whom he knows too much. As in, he’s gay.

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